Easy to recognize and define, but not so easy to live out. Second Timothy 2 paints a vivid picture of this goal. A soldier, an athlete, a farmer. All know their focus. Jim Elliot wrote the reference for these forthright words next to Elizabeth’s (who would one day be his wife) yearbook picture. “No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.” He knew what God had called him to, and he would not let earthly distractions take away from that.
We can learn from the example of a soldier’s life. Shift your focus to the front lines. Training, preparing daily. Working together with other soldiers. Seeking to please the one that enlisted him. Single-minded determination.
And the athlete. We visited the olympic training center in Colorado Springs last year and the amazing facility showed what it took to come home with the gold. Hours of practice. Moving there for as long as possible. Training with leaders and coaches that knew their field. Daily dedication. Working together with others. Knowing and following the rules. Single-minded determination
Further down in verse 22 it says, “pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.“
Pursuit – yearn, chase after, earnestly desire. ACTIVE. Not a passive, occasional part of the Christian life.
Undistracted, undefiled pursuit of God. Does that characterize my life?
Rather, I often find my life more in the pages of Ecclesiastes – futility, vanity, striving after the wind. Time spent browsing facebook, playing computer games, time I really don’t have to spare.
God convicts me on this and yet I keep straying back. Here’s to a fresh start. Leaving behind the emptiness that the world tries to entice me with and pursing with single-minded focus God’s design for my days.
How can you make following Christ the single-minded focus of your training plan?
Here’s my list:
– Start in God’s Word, prayer list in hand
– Spend spare time (when I’m tempted to grab my phone) memorizing Colossians 1
– Seek daily says to interact more deeply with my family (the circle of Christians that I find myself in daily). Ask questions, spend time, turn off screens, live life together instead of just in the same house.
Intentional. Single-mindedness. Everyday.
Lord, keep calling, I’m listening. Help me resist those temptations that keep dragging me away from the relationships that really matter. Help me to train harder and know more clearly how You want me to order my days. Give me strength to follow through and be the wife, mom, and Christ-follower that you have created me to be. ~Amen.